I was brought up in the church, back in the old days before the deluge when church-going, confirmation and so on were ordinary landmarks of life, but lost touch with it for twenty years, like almost all of my generation. I came to real belief as an adult, after a practical demonstration of God’s mercy at work in my life. I’m at the liberal end of the Christian spectrum, I suppose, in that I support the ordination of women, with full authority, to all three of the historic orders of priesthood; and I’ve come around, slightly to my surprise, to thinking that same-sex marriage is something we should be bringing within the Christian vision of a faithful, monogamous union. But though these things matter a lot to me as justice issues, they are not central to me as a Christian. If I’m a liberal, I’m a liberal saved by the blood of the Lamb. It is Christ that makes me a Christian, and the story of redemption and resurrection with Him at its heart. I come from a parish setting where it would seem a crazy luxury to pick and choose between different styles or schools of faith, not to mention weirdly beside the point. Locally, Christians of all kinds co-operate as a matter of basic survival – beggars can’t be choosers – but that seems right to me theologically as well. God is bigger than our tastes, our divisions and our theories. In Him is neither slave nor free, neither Jew nor Greek, and neither liberal nor conservative either. We’re all brothers and sisters. We should behave like it.

— My friend Francis Spufford, who is standing for election to the Church of England’s House of Laity.